“An instinctive taste teaches men to build their churches with spire steeples which point as with a silent finger to the sky and stars” and to God.” Samuel Taylor Coleridge
By Dottie Dewberry
For the WPT
MABEN — On March 27, the American Steeples and Baptisteries Co. from Wedowee, Ala., 36278, rolled into town to begin the process of removing the 50-year old steeple from the First Baptist Church rooftop and put up the new one.
The truck and trailer filled the space with the brilliant white steeple, support sections and the widow`s walk, and waited for morning to come so the action could begin.
The clouds rolled in, the clouds rolled away, the sun came out, then the sun went away behind the clouds that rolled in again as the wind blew something fierce. For hours, it was cloudy, windy and then sunny but still cold. That did not stop the guys from American Steeples and BK Edwards Inc. of Webster County as they slowly began the process of removing the old steeple, which had been a source of problems in the roof. It has leaked and according to Bro. Poss and Bro. Tommy, some creative engineering has kept the water from coming through the ceiling.
In addition to the workers from the steeple company and BKE Inc., every retired man and a few not retired men of the First Baptist Church were there overseeing the job. This does not mean they were telling folks what to do; this means they were over there seeing what was going on. It was hard not to laugh at the ones that finally had to go find a coat as it was cold. Occasionally, some women would sneak out of the building to take a peek at the new spire.
After about four hours, a lunch break, and many trips up and down the ladder and up and down off the boom truck, the old steeple was slowly cut away and swung to the ground by the BKE Inc. men that were operating the boom.
Gradually, all the parts were removed and the new replacement parts went back up. All is well that ends well. There were no slipups nor were there any slide-downs; just smooth and slow got the job done. Hunter Johnson should be recognized for his efforts in assisting the steeple company.
According to Bro. Tommy, this has been in the works for four years, but it was worth the wait. The public is invited to drive by and view the new steeple.